Candida albicans is a species of yeast that is most commonly found in the human gastrointestinal tract and on mucous membranes. Candida is an opportunistic pathogen, meaning it can cause infection when given the right conditions.
Generally, Candida is harmless and contribute to a healthy digestive system. Candida becomes a problem when the natural balance of bacteria in the body is disturbed. In certain cases, it can even lead to life-threatening illnesses like Invasive Candidasis. Candida can also cause serious infections in people with weakened immune system, such as those who are undergoing chemotherapy or those with HIV/AIDS.
Candida symptoms are:
What is Candida Overgrowth?
Your good gut bacteria are normally responsible for maintaining low levels of Candida in your body, however, if these beneficial microorganisms can quickly die off due to antibiotics, poor health, or a bad diet they may not be able to do their job properly. This can lead to an overgrowth of harmful pathogens such as Candida.
Consuming a diet high in junk foods, refined carbohydrates, and sugar is linked to an increased risk of Candida Overgrowth (1).
Stress is another overlooked culprit that can contribute to Candida Overgrowth, or excess yeast in the body. Stress causes hormone imbalances and weakens the immune system, making it easier for Candida to multiply.
Here is the list of the most popular Candida Yeast Overgrowth causes:
simple sugars, such as corn syrup
The most common types of Candida Infection
Vaginal Yeast Infection
When the Candida albicans strain overpopulates vaginal flora, it can lead to a potentially uncomfortable and embarrassing Vaginal Candidiasis. Common risk factors for vaginal yeast infections are pregnancy, antibiotic use, diabetes, and immune system impairment.
Candida albicans can also cause mouth thrush when the yeast colonizes inside the mouth and on the tongue. Risk factors for Candida albicans mouth thrush include taking antibiotics, HIV infection, and wearing dentures.
Candida albicans can also cause systemic infections when it spreads from the intestinal Candida Overgrowth to other parts of the body, a condition known as Invasive Candidiasis. Risk factors for Invasive Candidiasis include a compromised immune system, as well as the presence of Candida albicans in the blood.
What is Candida Cleanse?
Candida Cleanse diet is an alternative health practice used to treat Candida infections. It typically involves a combination of dietary changes, including fermented foods or probiotic supplements, as well as antifungals, that help to reduce the amount of Candida present in the body.
If you’re taking antifungal medication to treat a Candida infection, then adding a Candida Cleanse can help optimize the effects of those treatments and reduce your risk for future instances of chronic infection (2).
In either case, Candida Cleanse diet is also beneficial for optimizing digestive health because it helps remove toxins and impurities in the body which may promote Candida growth.
Candida Cleanse is an effective approach to conquer Candida Overgrowth while restoring microflora balance in your gut.
The most common benefits of Candida cleanse are:
reduction of UTI recurrence
increased energy levels
reduction of visual Candida symptoms (such as vaginal discharge, oral thrush, skin thrush)
Candida Cleanse consists of:
The aim of the Candida Cleanse is to clear out the Candida fungal infection, starting from the digestive tract and all over the body. Thus, Candida Cleanse consists primarily of anti-inflammatory foods that are low in starch or sugar.
Candida diet is full of nutritious healthy foods that are easily digested, such as proteins and fats, non-starchy vegetables, low sugar fruits and gluten free grains.
Without a question, Candida diet excludes foods that promote yeast growth, such as foods rich in sugar, gluten, and hydrogenated vegetable oils.
Foods to Eat
1. Eat Healthy Fats
Healthy fats are essential while on a Candida Cleanse. Since fats contain 9 calories per gram, consuming them is incredibly satiating – meaning you need to consume less in order to feel full. Fats are necessary for proper hormone production, nutrient absorption of fat-soluble vitamins (A, E, D & K), and cell membrane flexibility. Additionally, healthy fats are rich in omega-3 fatty acids which reduces inflammation throughout the body.
Healthy fats can come from protein sources such as a fatty cut of steak or salmon, as well as from plant sources like avocados, nuts and seeds.
Fruit oils, such as coconut or extra virgin olive oil, are also great sources of fats. Coconut oil can do it all! Not only is this a healthy source of fat, but it’s also an incredibly effective antifungal agent against Candida Overgrowth.
Choose low-mold nuts and seeds, such as almonds or sunflower seeds. Consequently, it is critical to incorporate premium-grade oils from healthy sources while detoxifying the body of Candida.
2. Eat Non-starchy Vegetables
Not all vegetables are created equal, especially in terms of the number of carbohydrates they contain. Starchy vegetables weigh heavily on sugar levels in your blood compared to their non-starchy counterparts because they contain more carbohydrates.
When you consume a lot of carbohydrates in one go, your blood sugar levels will rise rapidly. Once sugar levels rise, Candida takes full advantage of this opportunity and rapidly grows in numbers. As a result, Candida Overgrowth may worsen causing a recurrence of uncomfortable symptoms.
In contrast, low-starch vegetables that are part of the Candida diet contain significantly lower amounts of carbohydrates. As a result, they trigger only minor fluctuations in blood sugar levels – making it difficult for Candida to proliferate.
They also are rich in vitamins and nutrients that can help support your body’s natural defenses against Candida. Including non-starchy vegetables in your Candida diet can also provide your body with fiber, antioxidants, and other beneficial compounds which can help to reduce inflammation and improve digestion. Examples of vegetables that are low in starch include broccoli, cauliflower, kale, spinach, and asparagus.
3. Eat Low Sugar Fruits
One of the most important things you can do to combat Candida Overgrowth, is to cut down your sugar intake. This is because Candida is a yeast-like fungus that feeds off of sugar and multiplies in your gut flora when sugar is abundant in your body. Every time your blood sugar spikes, Candida yeast uses this opportunity to satiate itself and create a protective shield, known as biofilm, against immune system cells that try to get rid of it. That’s why Candida Cleanse is a low-sugar diet.
While it might appear intimidating to cut sugar from your diet, every single action you do to reduce the quantity of sugar consumed will help you conquer Candida Overgrowth. Every ounce counts!
You can start with the obvious sources of sugar such as sweetened drinks, candy, and desserts. But don’t forget to watch out for hidden sugars found in salad dressings, condiments, and even bread!
For the same reason, high-sugar fruits should be eliminated while on a Candida Cleanse. You can, however, substitute them with low-sugar fruits such as berries, apples, grapefruit or peaches.
It’s also important to remember that there are sugar alternatives available on the market like stevia, xylitol, and monk fruit extract. These natural artificial sweeteners can help you reduce your sugar intake and keep your sugar cravings down! However, Candida sufferers should still be mindful of their consumption and not overindulge.
4. Eat Gluten Free Grains
The main reason to avoid gluten while on Candida diet is because it can worsen Candida symptoms and prolong your Candida Cleanse. Gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley, and rye. It can be difficult to digest for some people, especially those with gluten intolerance or sensitivity. Even if you don’t have a gluten allergy, Candida Overgrowth itself can cause inflammation in your stomach lining.
Gluten is a common culprit in aggravating and exacerbating an already inflamed gastrointestinal tract, potentially leading to the leaky gut syndrome. The signs of stomach inflammation are similar to those of gluten intolerance, which are nausea, bloating, and slow digestion.
Eliminating gluten from your Candida diet will help reduce inflammation in your gut, decrease Candida Overgrowth, and speed up the Candida Cleanse process. Additionally, eliminating gluten can be beneficial for weight loss since it is a highly processed carbohydrate that isn’t nutrient-dense.
Incorporating nutrient-rich gluten-free grains such as oat bran, quinoa, and buckwheat in place of processed carbohydrates can help to accelerate your Candida Cleanse journey.
For Invasive Candidiasis and other serious conditions, prescription antifungals provide the most effective treatment. Conversely, if you believe that you have Vaginal Candidiasis but your doctor cannot confirm the diagnosis, it is possible to give natural antifungals a try while adhering to your Candida diet.
For example, apple cider vinegar contains phenolic acid, a natural antifungal agent. It creates an environment where Candida cannot thrive, thus limiting its growth. Besides, apple cider vinegar is a good antibacterial agent that helps balance out bacteria in the intestinal tract. To drink it, mix one teaspoon of apple cider vinegar with 8 ounces of water and drink it once or twice a day.
Additionally, caprylic acid found in coconut oil is an inhibitor of Candida Overgrowth. It helps to prevent new Candida colonies from forming and can reduce an existing Candida Overgrowth condition.
Herbal teas, such as ginger or echinacea tea, can also be consumed to help fight Candida Overgrowth and improve immune system functioning.
Finally, essential oils such as tea tree oil and oregano oil contain antifungal properties that can be used topically to help fight Candida Overgrowth.
Probiotics are another essential part of a Candida Cleanse. Candida is an opportunistic fungus that can overgrow in the digestive tract when our gut health is out of balance, leading to Candidiasis Overgrowth – a common yeast infection. The most destructive form of Candida infections, Invasive Candidiasis, is caused by a weakened immune system and the spreading of fungal infections beyond digestive tract.
Probiotics help restore good gut health by replenishing the beneficial bacteria and creating an environment where Candida growth can be controlled.
Consuming probiotic-rich foods, such as dairy products, helps to create a diverse gut microbiome that is essential for good gut health. Dairy products are rich in natural lactic acid bacteria which help to balance Candida Overgrowth and control fungal infections.
Probiotic foods are not only dairy products but also fermented foods such as pickles, sauerkraut, or kimchi. Eating probiotic foods can help to restore the balance of good and bad bacteria in your gut and reduce Candida Overgrowth.
Supplementing with probiotics is another way to increase beneficial bacteria levels in the digestive tract. Probiotic supplements are a quick and effortless way to add probiotics into your daily routine; you can select any strain of the beneficial bacteria at whatever time works for you. The most effective probiotic strains for Candida Overgrowth are Lactobacilli, Bifidobacteria, and Saccharomyces boulardii.
Adding bone broth to your Candida diet can help soothe the stomach lining and help intestinal inflammation caused by gluten and Candida Overgrowth.
Foods to avoid
Avoid foods that aggravate Candida Overgrowth, such as sugary and most junk foods. This means no high-sugar fruits (like bananas or mangoes), fruit juice, or canned fruits.
Most processed foods, like pizza and frozen meals, are foods to avoid because they contain substantial amounts of gluten which may further irritate an already weakened stomach lining caused by Candida yeast infection.
Additionally, these products are often laced with sugars that not only enhance their flavor but also help Candida proliferate.
For the duration of the Candida Cleanse, a high-sugar diet should be completely eliminated. There is no doubt that the Candida Cleanse diet is a strict diet.
Why should you do an Anti Candida Diet?
The Candida diet is a popular way to help reduce the symptoms of Candida and improve overall health. It is based on the Candida diet claim that consuming certain foods can help balance out your body’s internal environment and eliminate Candida. This involves avoiding sugary, processed, and high-carbohydrate foods while emphasizing nutrient-dense, whole foods.
The Ultimate Candida diet provides clear guidelines on which foods are beneficial for Candida sufferers and which ones should be avoided altogether. The Anti-Candida diet emphasizes specific food items such as low-starch vegetables, nuts and seeds that are not easily susceptible to molding, along with nutritious fats.
Though there is no scientific evidence specifically supporting that a Candida diet helps reduce yeast overgrowth, many people who follow this type of eating regimen report positive results (3). This healthy diet has also been shown to reduce other symptoms associated with digestive issues, such as abdominal pain and bloating.
Additionally, by eliminating processed foods that contain preservatives, artificial colors and flavors, and refined sugar, the diet can help improve overall well-being. Therefore, an Anti-Candida diet is worth considering for those looking to reduce symptoms of Candida and improve their overall health.